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tv   John King USA  CNN  September 8, 2010 7:00pm-8:00pm EDT

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twitter.com/wolfblitzercnn. you can also follow "the situation room" on facebook. go to facebook.com/cnnsituationroom to become a fan. that's all the time we have today. thanks very much for watching. i'm wolf blitzer in "the situation room." "john king usa" starts right "john king usa" starts right now. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com from a spectacular site along the banks of the ohio river in covington, kentucky. big political news tonight on both sides of this river. over there in ohio, president obama turned both populous and personal today as he escalated the election year debate with republicans over the number one issue in this election campaign, the economy. here in kentucky, another big surprise in a key senate race that already has helped put the tea party on the national map. new cnn polling out tonight shows in what is normally a reliable red state a dead heat between rand paul and democrat john conway. also some new numbers tonight in big races in florida and
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california. another big political story, sarah panlin just a short time ago, urging a christian pastor in florida to drop plans to stage a koran burning to commemorate 9/11. speaking in parma, ohio, today, that's near cleveland, he accused republicans of spurring every effort for job creation. and mr. obama served notice he is in no mood to extend even temporarily the bush era tax cults that go to americans making more than $250,000 a year. >> this isn't to punish folks who are better off. god bless them. it's because we can't afford the $700 billion price tag. and for those who claim that our approach would somehow be bad for growth and bad for small businesses, let me remind you that with those tax rates in
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place, under president clinton, this country created 22 million jobs and raised incomes and had the largest surplus in our history. >> so, can the president turn this election year economic debate in his party's favor or will more democratic candidates join republicans in accusing the an obama white house of putting the recovery at risk with tax hikes? on the road with me this week, national political correspondent jessica yellin and our senior political analyst gloria borger. let's begin with the president. because i want our viewers to hear a little bit more of the president. he was in ohio foopd he was very personal. calling out john boehner, the house republican leader, by name. he also made it personal to him. he recalled he was in ohio in the final days of his big election win in 2008. the president urging voters, if you were with me then, stay with me now. >> a lot has changed since i came here in those final days of
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the last election. but what hasn't changed is the choice facing this country. it's still fear versus hope. the past versus the future. it's still a choice between sliding backward and moving forward. that's what this election's about. that's the choice that you will face in november. >> the president says that's the choice you will face in november. but can he make this? can he make this the choice voters face in 2008? they are in a very, very different mood as we've found out the last few days on the road. >> this is the framing they've wanted to hear from the president for months now. he's explaining in a coherent sort of big-picture way why he's taking the steps he's taking and where he's going and he's putting what he believes is an unlikable face on what the republicans would do, that's john boehner. we heard him mention boehner over and over. the big question is, is it too late? and i know the white house will say no. >> yeah, but here's the
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interesting thing that i heard from the president today. you know, the white house is always saying, we don't want this to be a referendum on barack obama. these are individual races all across the country. today, i saw the president personalize the election. and again turn it around to being about barack obama. what he set out to do when he won in 2008. and saying the job isn't done. so what he did today was essentially put a stake in the ground and nationalize the election again into a referendum on to his presidency, which i'm not sure a lot of democrats wanted. >> interesting point. a couple of itdays ago, the president put money into infrastructure spending. today, he put on the table an idea that many republicans support, giving business a quicker writedown, research and development tax credit. build a new factory, write off the costs sooner. hire people now, write off the costs sooner. the president put that on the table. he was in ohio.
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just a week or so ago, the man who would be speaker if republicans have a big year, he gave a speech criticizing just about every sentence of the obama economic policy. the president today called him out by name. >> were no new policies from mr. boehner. there were no new ideas. there was just the same philosophy that we had already tried during the decade that they were in power. the same philosophy that led to this mess in the first place. cut more taxes for millionaires. and cut more rules for corporations. >> so that's the president's message against the man who would be the republican speaker of the house. gloria, you were across the river today. that's cincinnati on that side of the river. just to the north side, there's a congressional district, steve drehouse, a democratic freshman, in a tough race against the republican who once held that seat, steve shabette. you put the question to steve
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drehouse, are you with the president? he didn't give a very good answer. >> what would you do though? say it's got to come up, a decision's got to be made. would you keep the tax cuts for the middle class and have the tax cuts for the wealthy expire? i'm going to support the middle class, support small business. >> how would you vote? >> tell me what the bill is. this hypothetical of the bush tax cuts as one big package, this is not the way it's going to work. >> but it's not a hypothetical in the sense you have two choices on the table right now. let them expire completely. and what the president wants to do, which is let the tax cult cults expire for anyone at 250 grand and above. why won't he answer the question? >> the president's political point is don't hold tax cuts for the middle class hostage to the rich. but if you're in a swing district like steve driehaus, you understand anytime the democrats start talking about tax increases, it gives the republicans an opening to say
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"there they go again, they're democrat, they want to raise your taxes." even if you look at the polls, people don't mind raising taxes on the wealthy. but when they hear tax increases, they say, uh-oh, if they raise it on that guy, they could do it on me, and so it's dangerous territory for a swing district. >> let's ask another democrat in a very tough race. jacobway is the democratic attorney general of this state we're in tonight, kentucky. in a moment, we'll talk about his race against the tea party favorite rand paul. welcome to the conversation. right now, is the president right? should the bush tax cuts for those making it $50,000 and more, should they expire at the end of the year, or are the republicans right, saying no, mr. president, not in a recession, those tax cuts affect small buy extend them at least for a couple of years. who's right, sir? >> this is an issue where i differ with the president. i think the bush tax cuts ought to be extended. i think the economy we're in right now, it's just no time to be raising taxes.
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>> that's jacobway, hek conway. mr. conway is in what you might consider to be a surprise, a dead heat race tonight with the tea party candidate rand paul. one of the many races this year, one of the many things about this state that makes it so fascinating in this midterm election year. here's a closer look. kentucky is reliably red, meaning reliably republican in presidential elections. but it's still a big battleground state in this midterm election year. as with everywhere else, it is the economy driving the debate. 9.9% unemployment at kentucky. slightly above the national average. manufacturing jobs, down during the obama presidency. construction job, also down by 15% in the obama presidency. one of the gains in kentucky, professional and business services. but overall still a tough economic environment in this midterm election year. one of the marquee races getting national attention is the senate race between rand paul, a tea
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party favorite, now the republican nominee, against jack conway, conway is the democratic state attorney general. paul got the republican nomination. the democrats think some of his positions might make this race gettable. into the final week, it is the republican who has the lead so far. as we watch that, this and other state where republicans hope to pick up one or two house seats currently held by democrats. their primary target is john yarmuth. this is one of seats the republicans hope to take away in the midterm election season. one other reason to pay attention to kentucky, its senior senator mitch mcconnell. if the republicans can get the majority, mcconnell of kentucky would be the new majority leader. i didn't miss a premium payment for 10 years. the minute i got sick, i lost my insurance. not anymore. america's healthcare reforms change lives for the better.
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iaiaiaiabetes. and i'm worried if i lose my job, i won't be able to afford insurance. not anymore. america's healthcare reforms change lives for the better. to see how it can help you, visit us at americasfairhealthcare.org it is just a spectacular night. you're looking at the ohio river. cincinnati on the left side of your screen there. on our side of the river, covington, kentucky. this state has one of this year's most fascinating senate races. tea party favorite rand paul won the republican nomination defeating the establishment republican party candidate. with us is his opponent, the democratic attorney general of
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this state, jack conway. also still with me, our political correspondent jessica yellin and our senior political analyst gloria borger. many people across the country had decided this state was going to stay red. that race would be rand paul's, despite some controversy. here's our new poll out tonight among registered voters. rand paul, 46%. conway, 46%. i would note this is among registered voters. if we took a poll of likely voter, i suspect paul would get a bounce because of the energy on the republican side. but you are in contention, sir, at a time many democrats thought probably not. why? >> well, we're going to win this race. and our own poll shows a dead heat as well, john. you have to understand what's going on here in kentucky. kentuckiens don't want to be embarrassed. and rand paul has said some things that are just out of the mainstream and make kentuckiens think he's too risky. a couple weeks ago, he jumped up and said that drugs aren't a pressing issue here in the commonwealth of kentucky. not too far from where you are,
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we have an epidemic dealing with prescription pills in eastern kentucky. rand paul just doesn't fundamentally seem to get that. he's spoken out against the education department and pell grants. he's spoken out against our farm programs and against that portion of the farm bill that helps 500,000 kentucky kids with free and reduced lunch. he's running sort of a national campaign. he's forgetting what kentuckians want and what they need out of washington and he's just not aligning himself with the state. we're showing a dead heat. we're going to win this race. i'm getting hit with a lot of special interests out of state money now and we're fighting back. >> all right. let me jump in. after this, i went gloria and jessica to join the questioning. rand paul had a new television ad today. he's a doctor, an opthamologist. he's been critical of the obama health care plan. you were one of the attorney generals who was asked but declined to join the lawsuit challenging the obama health care plan. here's the ad.
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>> rand always puts patients first. that's why he opposes the health care scheme, which puts washington bureaucrats in charge. >> is health care an issue in which he can, he can, maybe pick up ground against you in this state? >> i don't think so. i think it's receding as an issue. 654,000 kentuckiens are going to get access to health insurance as a result of that bill. 45,000 small kentucky businesses will get help with premiums because of that bill. rand paul's running around and he's against every federal program except medicare because he says he needs them for his doctor's payments. karl rove is obviously in here spending about $500,000 against me on the issue of health care reform and we're fighting back. we had a one-day internet fund-raising bond yesterday and if folks want to help us fight back against the karl rove special interest money, they can help us out but we're going to beat it back. >> rand paul -- this is gloria
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borger. rand paul seems to be beating you in most demographic groups, exempt for senior citizens. in our poll, it shows that you are beating him 51% to 42%. why is it that seniors don't like rand paul? >> i think -- i think the seniors in kentucky have many needs, including social security and medicare. on those particular issues, they just don't trust them. rand paul's made some statements about social security that were highlights during the primary. he's made some statements about medicare that are problematic. i think the seniors of this state, kentucky's a little bit of an older state, i don't think they quite trust him. he kind of waffled back from them. so i just don't think they trust him about some of the stuff he's saying about those important programs. >> general conway, it's jessica yellin. we've talked about the enthusiasm gap. clearly there's a lot of enthusiasm in the tea party movement for rand paul. today, across the river,
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president obama was out partially campaigning in a way, you could say. would you want obama to come campaign for you in this state, would it help you? >> obviously, the president's going to go where he feels like he's most needed. i think you welcome the president to your state regardless of the party. this campaign is going to be about conway versus paul. it's going to be about my record of attorney general, of holding corporations accountable, holding pharmaceutical companies accountable that gouged our medicaid program. about my positive record as attorney general. and rand paul's world view, where he would hold no one accountable. i mean, he thinks we ought to do away with osha workplace safety standards. he said to the widows of coal miners that sometimes that happens -- >> is that an invitation? >> i'm just saying, once that contract is made -- >> -- kentucky first. >> in politics, we call that a pivot. ask the question about one thing and turn it to another. mr. conway, he's a seasoned
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candidate, win or lose in this election. jack conway. we'll check back in as this race goes on. we invited rand paul on the program. he was on the program sometime ago. we invited him on the program tonight because we're here in kentucky and he declined. he is welcome anytime. we'll have mr. conway back as well, i am sure. thank you, sir. when we come back, we'll move on to other hot races. new poll numbers in florida and california. you'll want to see them. some of them might surprise you. we'll go one on one with a very important man in this state and this country, mitch mcconnell. if he can pick up ten seats, and he'll give you his path, he could be the next senate majority leader. and latest on the koran controversy. there's a minister in florida that wants to burn korans on 9/11. mitt romney and sarah palin now weighing in saying that's a bad idea.
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welcome back, from the banks of the ohio river in covington, kentucky. let's check in with joe johns for the latest news. >> the remnants of tropical storm hermin is causing floods and tornados in central texas. a tornado warning issued a short time ago for central dallas county. detroit's mayor is defending his city's fire department and blaming unusually strong, dry winds for knocking down power lines and causing some 85 fires in a four-hour period. and controversial arizona sheriff joe arpaio is giving a speech in new hampshire this
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sunday. a spokesman tells cnn the sheriff is not testing the president's waters, even though many people are urging him to run. john, i can tell you for a fact, there is a facebook page that says joe arpaio for president but so far i've seen about 325 members, just checked it. >> as you know, joe, he's been a frequent visitor here on the program. we'll check in with him again. not a shy guy. i'm sure he's going to love the spotlight up in new hampshire. let's move on. some other big new numbers tonight from cnn. big senate races. let's bring in john avlon, from the daily beast. and erick erickson, conservative editor of the red state.com. i'm in kentucky today so i went over to louisville to see mitch mcconnell, the senate republican leader. he needs a net gain of ten seats. republicans need ten on election day to make mcconnell the majority leader. we played a little mix of
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"sportscenter" and "david letterman." have a listen. >> i'll tell you where we're competitive. number one, i don't -- we will not lose a single republican incumbent senator in november. number two, we have five republican open seats. including here in the commonwealth of kentucky. we will win all of those. and we are competitive, that is, in the race, either slightly behind, dead even or ahead, in the following places where there are democratic senators, california, washington, nevada, colorado, illinois, delaware, pennsylvania, indiana, north dakota, arkansas, wisconsin, and probably even in connecticut and maybe west virginia. i'm not predicting we're going to win all those but we're on offense and we will win a number of them. and we will be a more influential group in the next congress. >> the republican leader mitch mcconnell naming 13 democrats
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seats there, 13, if you're counting. when i asked him for his top ten list, let's start with california. here are the new voters out tonight. boxer, 48%. fiorina, the republican challenger, 44%. and if you look at the breakdown among democrats, independents and republican, you see in the middle, boxer, 45%, fiorina, 40%, among independent voters. john avlon, the republicans can say, hey, we're competitive in california, that's a plus, but heading into the stretch, they probably hoped it was a little better than that. >> think it's going to tighten up a little bit. you need to look at the boxer/fiorina race, also whitman versus brown in the gubernatorial race. if whitman has a strong push into the fall that could help fiorina with independents in particular. clearly, the republicans are running against headwinds in california. not a lot that's conservative about california. the candidates there are doing better than expected because in part of the fiscal crisis in that state.
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>> erick, one of the races you've paid attention to is florida where you have the three-way race. mark rubio is the republican candidate. crist is now the independent candidate for senate. meek is the democratic nominee. the numbers are fascinating. meek, the democrat, 24%. rubio, 36%. the republican, crist, 34%. i want to show our viewers, let's put it up, the breakdown among democrat, independents and republicans. even if you just look at crist numbers, he's getting 36% of those describing themselves as democrats. 45% of those who describe themselves as in thedependents. erick erickson, when you look at that right now, republicans need to hold this seat or mcconnell has no dream of being the majority leader. >> right. >> what worries you? >> not a whole lot worries me frankly. we're talking about registered voters in the poll. for perspective, pretty much every registered voter poll leans democrats. there tend to be more democrats
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who are registered voters. take kentucky it's where 46/46 among registered voters. while we were at break i looked at the real clear politics average and it's 8% ahead for rand paul when you factor in likely voters where he's 15% ahead in three polls. among likely voters, rubio is ahead in a registered voter poll, looks very good for him. who would have expected? i would have never guessed we'd be talking about competitiveness for republicans in places like washington and california. >> erick makes an interesting point. in our polling we have a system. we go registered voters for now. we'll go to likely voters heading into the final weeks of the campaign. i want you to listen to steve shabit. the republican challenger for a house district across the river here in cincinnati. it is a true point that if you judge voter intensity, listen, he'll tell you where it is. >> you saw what happened in 2008 when democrats were so energized. can you tell me fe
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about republican voters this time around? >> yeah, the energy last time was clearly on the democrat's side and in their favor. this time, republicans and conservatives can't wait to vote. i've heard the expression, they'd crawl over broken glass to get to the polls this time. they want to vote. and i think they're going to vote in overwhelming numbers this time. >> let me ask you both, quickly, and we'll talk a bit later in the program, but on this point the president was in ohio today and one of his goals, talking in a populous way about the economy, trying to change that intensity that dynamic. any evidence he's succeeding? >> i think by personalizing it and trying to build off it, one thing consistently in the polls is voters blame republicans for the fiscal problems. obama won it by ten points. now his numbers are upside down. that's a big headwind for a democratic candidate to confront. >> yeah, you know, i would say --
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>> erick, any evidence? >> the president's doing his best now. he's doing what paul begala has been breath his chest for months saying he needs to do. finally doing it. i'm sure these races will narrow somewhat. you've got to remember in 1994, they narrowed almost completely back to where they had been. it didn't help. there's so much momentum for republicans. there's going to be very, very hard for democrats. according to "the washington post" yesterday, this is the first election since 1930 where republican turnout in primaries exceeded democrats. contrast that in 1930 when there were more registered republicans than democrats. it's pretty impressive they were able to do it this time. >> i missed the 1930 election. we'll talk to you both later in the program. if you go back through the obama administration, who has been the republican who has most led the charge against the obama agenda? not john boehner of ohio but mitch mcconnell, the senior senator from kentucky.
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much. >> well, we're certainly willing to talk to the president about anything that might help get us out of this economic trough we're in. but at the same time, he is recommending that we continue to pursue higher taxes in the middle of what most americans think is a recession. i don't think these targeted efforts are going to have nearly the stimulative effect they might have if you were not depressing the economy with things like raising taxes. this particular tax increase he has in mind that he will characterize as a tax increase on the wealthy, in fact, impacts 50% of small business income, 25% of the workforce, and our friends on the other side can say, oh, it's only 3% of small businesses. i had my staff check to find out how many businesses that is. it's 750,000 businesses, the most productive small billses in the country. >> as we sit here today, do you believe there's a reasonable
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chance of the ten-seat pickup that would make you the majority leader? >> i think i'll be the leader of a larger group than i am now. i'm optimistic i'm going to the leader of a larger group. >> 8, 9, 10, 12? >> we have a long way to go, a lot left to happen. we're giving it our best shot. the wind is at our back. that's an experience we haven't had the last two cycles. and it's good to be running in an environment where people seem to want checks and balances in washington. they're not in love with either side, we know that but they've looked at what this administration has done, they don't like it, and they'd like some balance in washington. >> what do you see is the message to you in this campaign, right here in your home state, the tea party candidate won, the candidate you endorsed. that's not the only example. you can go across the country and see what it's kentucky, alaska, colorado. we could go down the list. what message for voters in your
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own coalition sending you, that you will have to deal with people who have challenged you who have said straight out, joe miller, the nominee in alaska, i spoke to him a little more than a week ago. i asked him if he wins that race, will he vote for you for leader, and he said, let's see what happens. they're mad at the republican establishment. they think their own party let them down. supported too much spending, maybe not stood up to obama enough. do you take a lesson from that? >> i already have enough votes to be re-elected leader and we'll work with him no matter what his view may be. >> do you think in all that you personally or the leadership in general has to change its way are, or is your message to them, you know if you win and you come to washington, maybe you'll learn more about the system and you'll understand it a little better? >> if you look at the current leadership, 18 months ago, we were down 12 points in the party generic ballot and presiding over a small number. i think john boehner and i have had a lot to do with the comeback we may well have this november in warp-speed time. in 18 to 20 months, we've come
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back from all the articles being written about the demise of the republican party. i think some of that is attributable to good leadership. >> so no apologies? >> apologies for opposing the obama initiatives? no apologies for opposing the stimulus. no apologies for opposing the health care bill. no apologies for opposing what they call the wall street bill. i think those were measures that were wrong for the country. and it's a shame that the president didn't choose to go to the center. what i'm hoping is after this election, he'll become a more born-again moderate, move to the center as he campaigned in '08. if he does that, we'll be happy to meet him there. >> how about the period before the obama election or before the democrats took back the congress in the -- after the 2006 elections, some of those conservative activists are mad for that stretch, thinking you spent too much money and forgot
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about conservative principles. >> this election's about the future, not the past. we're running against this administration and this congress and what they've done over last 18 months. i think that's what the american people are focusing on. >> how hard is it to be a leader today, and want to be the leader tomorrow, at a time there is some house cleaning going on? >> we have a lot less tension than the other side. they're busy pointing the fingers at each other blaming the white house for the dilemma they're in. their candidates are running away from the speaker and the president, running ads that feature the speaker and the president, saying, i don't work for them. i've got a very happy conference, looking forward to having a larger number of people after november. >> if you have a larger group, let's start with this hypothetical, if you have a larger group, but you're still in the minority, what will the first conversation with the president be? you two have not develop add very close relationship. we have talked about this since right after he was elected. >> yeah, well, i don't dislike
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the president, but we -- he just, i think, felt he didn't need me. we did have a private meeting right before the august recess and we agreed not to discuss what we talked about there but i did say afterwards that i thought he had the feeling he was going to be talk to me a lot more often in the future and i think the reason he thinks that is because he thinks i'm going to be the leader of the larger group. look, i don't want the president to fail. i want the president to change. he needs to move dramatically away from this leftward drift that's tried to turn america into a western europe-type country. and come back to the middle. we can meet him seriously on reducing spending. reducing debt. he says he's for nuclear power. i'm for nuclear power. he says he's for clean coal technology. i'm for clean coal technology. there are a number of things that we can do where there are similar interests, it's just that he hasn't chosen to do any of those in his first two years. >> and he says if there's any evidence to go back to the bush
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administration idea of taking a small sliver of your social security money and being allowed to put it into private accounts, he will wield the veto pen, he says no privatization on his watch. he says if you try to significantly repeal or change the health care law, that he would have a veto pen for that too. >> well, nobody's talking about social security except the democrats. they always bring up social security -- >> some of your candidate, mr. miller in alaska says maybe even phase it out -- >> -- run on social security every single election. the president himself has appointed a deficit-reduction commission to which i have appointed three people. john boehner's appointed three people. they're looking at the entitlements. we'll see what they come back and recommend in december. but if it's election time, you can guarantee the democrats are talking about social security. >> they do talk about social security you're absolutely right. it's been an age old democratic strategy. >> we're used to it. >> this time, they've been getting some fresh coats, if you will, from people like mr. miller who says in his view
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the country can't afford it and should start thinking about making that a states right program. mr. buck in colorado has also said it needs significant changes and he questions whether the founding fathers could have ever envisioned it happening. when you have republican candidates saying things like that, it gives them fodder. that's two candidates. 50 states. but do you have conversation with those candidates saying look, it's not helpful if you talk about that? >> we know what this fall election's about. it's about too much spending, too much debt, too many washington takeovers and tax increases in the middle of an economic slowdown. that's what the elections about. there will be some candidates who talk about different kinds of issues. the democrats will try to run against president bush again. we know what's on the minds of the american people. and we think that they're headed toward a serious midcourse correction that can bring the president back to the political center. >> mitch mcconnell in his office in louisville a bit earlier
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today. one of gifts you get when you go on the road is you get to come to beautiful places. as we go to break, take a look at this sunset along the ohio river. next, some things we've learned from some remarkable people we've met along the way. ♪ [ male announcer ] your first day. you try to lie low, get the lay of the land. but then autoblog.com calls your interior lexus quiet. and automobile magazine goes comparing you to a cadillac. ♪ so much for the new kid fitting in with the rest of the class. the all new chevrolet cruze. starting under $17,000. get used to more. ♪
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welcome back. let's check in with joe johns for the latest political news you need to know right now. >> we have new polls and a pair of important governors races. california is tied up. republican meg whitman's
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two-point lead over democrat jerry brown is within the poll's sampling margin of error. in florida, democrat alex sink's seven-point lead over republican rick scott could be a lot narrower also because of the sampling error. also in florida, a church pastor tells cnn they have no intention of canceling plans to burn korans to mark the anniversary of 9/11. mitt romney's weighed in, telling politico, quote, burning korans is wrong on every level. and a facebook posting, sarah palin write, people have a constitutional right to burn a koran if they want to but doing so is insensitive and an unnecessary provocation, much like building a mosque at ground zero. and don't forget, the imam behind those plans for an islamic center and mosque near ground zero talks exclusively with cnn's soledad o'brien tonight on "larry king live" at 9:00 p.m. eastern and a lot of buzz about that interview, john. you know, among other things,
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i've heard he has been criticized, the imam has, for simply not talking about this before now, because of his world tour. this is the time he opens up i guess. >> it will be quite fascinating. he knows, of course, anything he says will add to the controversy. the question is, can he turn the volume down or will he escalate it? that's must-see tv tonight. when we come back, we'll empty out our notebooks. what have we learned on the road the last several days? tdd# 1-800-345-2550 what if every atm was free? tdd# 1-800-345-2550 no more $2, $3 fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 no more paying to access your own money. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 it'd be like every atm in the world was your atm. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 the schwab bank high yield investor checking(tm) account. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 zero atm fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 a great interest rate. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 no minimums. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 the biggest thing in checking since checks. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 open an account at 1-800-4schwab or schwab.com.
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would rahm emanuel make a good mayor? >> oh, gosh, i know rahm. i guess they have such big numbers they didn't think they needed us. it will be interesting to see what he chooses to do. fun to watch. >> you won't cut him a check if he runs -- >> i probably won't be supporting a democrat running for mayor of chicago, no.
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>> that's one of the things we learned in kentucky. the republican senate leader mitch mcconnell won't be sending rahm emanuel a check if he runs for mayor of chicago. let's talk about some other things we learned. back with us, our cnn contributors erick erickson and john avlon. in kentucky, jessica yellin, our national political correspondent and gloria bornle eborger. is the intensity of the tea party still there? the tea party gave rand paul that republican nomination for senate. jessica, you talked to some tea party voters today about their message. let's share it. >> one message we want to send is, if you don't support us, we're not going to support you in future elections. like you've asked us, we're not going away. we will be there. >> the tea party, now, is in its infancy. wait till we grow teeth. >> what did you come away with?
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>> they are true political activists now. they said we were just getting involved. now we're informed. and we're here to stay. also, they do not want their candidates to be flexible in the least. i mean, we talk about bipartisanship. they're not interested in bipartisanship unless everybody can move to where they stand. it will be a very different senate if a lot of their candidates are in it. >> what's the most interesting lesson, pennsylvania, ohio, here in kentucky? >> it's interesting. what i learned is just because barack obama says something doesn't mean it's going to be so with democrats. and when i talked with steve drihaus on the tax cut issue, the day the president was giving the speech in his state, he wouldn't commit to supporting that repeal of the tax cuts for the wealthy. >> critical also, the young people we've run into don't seem terribly involved in this election. a woman i sat down with today says she hasn't been paying much attention and most of her friends, she doesn't think they'll vote. i want you to listen to this
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because the president of the united states gave an interview to abc's george stephanopoulos today and it seems pretty clear he's thinking more and more about the election and he's trying to keep it from being a referendum on, say, the question reagan posted, are you better off than you were two years ago? >> my challenge and the challenge of every democratic candidate out there is making sure people understand there's a choice here. if the election is a referendum on are people satisfied about the economy as it currently is, then we're not going to do well because i think everybody feels like this economy needs to do better than it's been doing. >> on the one hand, john avlon, no shock from what the president said, but it's pretty clear he sees the trend line. >> sure, i mean, you know, democrats can't be in denial. every single trend shows republicans have the wind at their back. the question is, you know, you heard mitch mcconnell talking about wanting to meet obama in
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the middle. it must be general election time and they realize they need independent voters. the question is, is there any credibility? or is it about obstruction? that's going to be one of the final sales jobs republicans are going to have to do. >> i would say i think voters have become so cynical about both parties that they don't believe what they're hearing from either side. but what they see with their eyes and they know in their gut is that we're headed in the wrong direction and the policies we've been pushing in washington for the past few years haven't worked and they want the other side, even though they haven't liked them, they want to give them a shot at it. the cynicism is going to be hard for the democrats to break through for the next two months. >> one of the things i am fascinated by and i want everybody's opinion as we round out tonight is the tough choices that both parties, but particularly the democrat, will have to make, which is who to give money to and who to cut off. if you go back to the '06 midterm election, the rpts were in the same position the democrats are in now,
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desperately trying to hold on to their congressional majorities. and i remember them cutting off candidates at the end and making a big decision in the end. we're going to try to keep the virginia senate seat. they had three or four states left. no one else got money. in a tough race, all the money went in there. and they came up just short. gloria, will the democrats make those decisions? a guy like jack conway here could be a guy who loses out. >> they have to, particularly in the house. don't forget the democrats occupy what, 99% of all the swing districts in the house because they were so successful in 2006 and 2008. >> right. >> so the campaign committee in the house is going to have to make lots of decisions. if some folks in those swing districts are so far behind that you can't save them. >> and republicans are working on a game plan to force democrats to have to cut people off. so they want to build up so much strength, a fire wall in states like, say, pennsylvania, florida, that they can move out west and start pumping money into california.
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the fact democrats have to compete there, means it's so much money. >> a final thought on that point, the fire wall strategy. >> i think the democrats will have to do this. they've got more money in the bank but it didn't help them in new jersey, massachusetts or virginia, those gubernatorial and special senate elections. >> it's going to mean some very tough choices. guys like con waishgs better than probably expected candidates. someone like meek in florida. might be on the losing end of that decision. >> one other thing, i've just learned, jessica yellin's i-pad can make some really interesting noises while we're on television. gentlemen, thank you. jess and gloria as well. when we come back, pete's on the street, and i understand pete wants to get personal. to do even more.is droid now it integrates your work e-mail, so you can be hooked up to everything you need to do. now it does 1 ghz speed on a more intuitive keyboard. turning you into an instrument of efficiency.
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time now to check in with our offbeat reporter pete dominick. he's in new york tonight. >> you're on the road. of course, monday, you were in pittsburgh, pennsylvania, yesterday, columbus, ohio, and tonight you're in kentucky. america wants to know, john king, and i'll put you on the spot, and you must commit, who has the best food, first of all. >> no way. i'm not doing that. i enjoyed great small diners all
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over the place. we have this new hookup, if you've followed the tour, i've had some great meals in every state. it's a 50 state beautiful place to eat this country. it's a copout. >> that's what we call in politics the pivot. all right, john, so here's my question for you. today, the president gave this fiery, i would say partisan, speech in ohio. look how many times he said the name "boehner." i think it's 8 to 10. watch this. >> mr. boehner. mr. boehner. mr. boehner. mr. boehner. mr. boehner. mr. boehner. mr. boehner. >> john king, there was a time when he didn't really call out names. almost didn't say the word "republican" very often. is this a change? >> it's interesting. some people say it's a mistake for the president of the united states to elevate the house republican leader. but here's where the democrats are going with this in the white house. it's very hard to say those republicans. ites
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